Jack Berry: Mean Machine Review

Mean Machine is the second album from Nashville’s Jack Berry following Blues Rock Review’s #2 album of 2013, Heathen Heart. Berry is a Los Angeles to Nashville transplant who plays great riff rock with alt-pop flare that would make Jack White proud. The drums are loud and in your face. The bass hits you in the chest like a nine pound sledge hammer and the guitars are drenched in fuzz and octave pedal goodness.

The album kicks off with the balls out protest shuffle “Bad Dog.” It’s a simple but effective riff and warms your ears up for what’s to come. “Coal,” which sports an early Black Keys vibe, is a good example of how Berry weaves in various influences while still speaking in his own unique voice. “Heavy Hopes” is appropriately titled with it’s slow and sludgy, post Black Sabbath riff. The amps sound absolutely crushed. Could he actually be turned up to fabled eleven? “King of Diamonds” opens with a riff reminiscent of The Faces. Here Berry waxes melancholy, like the voice of one crying in the wilderness. He also visits this feel on the heavy yet emotional, “The Bull.”

Mean Machine is a great blues tinged alternative rock record with impassioned performances. Some may accuse Jack Berry of wearing his influences on his sleeve like on the Zeppelin inspired “Kiss Like,” which appeared on Heathen Heart and was re-recorded here, but he’s just so damn good that I don’t think that even matters. With Mean Machine, Jack Berry plants his foot firmly on the shores of the new world of alternative blues based rock.

The Review: 9/10

Can’t Miss Tracks

– Bad Dog
– Coal
– Heavy Hopes
– King of Diamonds
– Kiss Like
– The Bull

The Big Hit

– The Bull

Review by Lou Lombardi

Buy the album: Amazon

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One Response to “Jack Berry: Mean Machine Review”

  1. Libby says:

    Super exetcid to see more of this kind of stuff online.

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